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News Release

May 1 Snowpack Stays Well Above Average Statewide

Contact:
Brian Domonkos
406-587-6991


 

 


Bozeman--The weather patterns of April brought well above average precipitation and below average temperatures to Montana resulting in a snowpack that has seen significant gains compared to average, according to the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Typically by the end of April, snowpacks in the northwest region of the state have reached their peaks and are beginning to recede, but this is not the case in 2011. Most major basins in the state are near peak snowpack or still accumulating snow. Statewide precipitation increased to 161 percent of average for the month of April, nearly all in the form of snow. At this point only low elevation snowpacks show signs of melting, with middle and high elevation snowpacks requiring warmer weather.

Snow Water Content
River Basin Percent of Average Percent of Last Year April percent Change
Columbia 160 241 +42
Kootenai, Montana 169 244 +43
Flathead, Montana 180 235 +50
Upper Clark Fork 154 226 +39
Bitterroot 150 299 +43
Lower Clark Fork 167 253 +44
Missouri 153 213 +37
Missouri Headwaters 143 205 +30
 - Jefferson 137 192 +27
 - Madison 145 224 +32
 - Gallatin 143 195 +27
Missouri Mainstem 180 224 +55
 - Headwaters Mainstem 157 220 +43
 - Smith-Judith-Musselshell 188 169 +66
 - Sun-Teton-Marias 166 349 +50
 - Bearpaw Mountains 334 208 +164
St. Mary 142 218 +19
St. Mary and Milk 145 218 +5
Yellowstone 145 215 +30
Upper Yellowstone 151 240 +29
Lower Yellowstone 139 199 +32
Statewide 160 230 +40

If you encounter any problems with the files provided on this page, please contact Brian Domonkos at .

See the following text document for detailed basin snowpack information:

Basin-Wide Snowpack Summary (TXT; 64 KB)

May 1 streamflow forecasts are a reflection of the current above average snowpack conditions. Assuming average future precipitation and temperatures for the remainder of the snowmelt season, streamflows volumes are forecasts to be well above average across all basins within Montana.

Below are averaged streamflow forecasts, by river basin, for the period May 1 through July 31. These forecasts assume near normal spring conditions and do not account for well below average (70 percent or less) or well above average (130 percent or more) snowmelt or spring rain.

Streamflow Forecasts
River Basin May to July this Year Percent of Average May to July Last Year Percent of Average
Columbia 154 62
-- Kootenai 144 60
-- Flathead 173 78
-- Upper Clark Fork 145 55
-- Bitterroot 134 51
-- Lower Clark Fork 153 49
Missouri 149 66
-- Jefferson 133 54
-- Madison 130 66
-- Gallatin 129 77
-- Missouri Mainstem 136 60
-- Smith-Judith-Musselshell 178 87
-- Sun-Teton-Marias 154 57
-- Milk 192 85
St. Mary 143 81
Yellowstone 140 65
-- Upper Yellowstone 142 68
-- Lower Yellowstone 138 61
Statewide 149 65

NOTE: The "May to July Last Year Percent of Average" column above is what was forecast last year, NOT what actually occurred.

See the following text document for detailed basin streamflow forecast information:

Provisional Water Supply Forecasts (TXT; 24 KB)

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